Label : Spinefarm Records/Universal

Review by Tony Cannella

For a band that has yet to release a full-length album, there is an incredible buzz surrounding the Swedish/Danish outfit Amaranthe. Perhaps it is the fact that female singer Elise Ryd toured with American/Norwegian power metallers Kamelot that helped get the band some press. Whatever the case, Amaranthe have just issued their self-titled full-length debut via Spinefarm. With their debut album, it is time to see what all the fuss has been about. Amaranthe has previously released a 5-song demo in 2009, now that has morphed into their first official full-length album. All of the songs that were on their demo show up here on this release. Amaranthe starts with the up-tempo Stratovarius style power metal of “Leave Everything Behind”. Instantly the listener is smacked with the three different vocal styles that Amaranthe employs. In addition to the crystal clear vocals that Elise brings to the table, you also get harsh vocals by Andy Solvestrom and clean metal style male vocals courtesy of Jake E Berg. “Leave Everything Behind” is a strong opener that is one of the best songs presented here. “Hunger” keeps things up-tempo and it is easy to see why this was chosen as the bands first video clip. “1,000,000 Light Years” is next and is another up-tempo number that quickly became a huge highlight and is another favorite. “Automatic” features a fast paced grinding the guitar riff, which drives this one and helps to make this one of the more aggressive tracks. “Amaranthine” quickly became another favorite, part ballad, part mid-tempo this is definitely one the tracks that stood out. Other highlights that can be heard on this 42-minutes worth of infectious Power Metal are: “My Transition”, “Rain”, “Director’s Cut” and the closer “Serendipity”. With three vastly different vocal styles, it would be easy for things to devolve into an incoherent mess, but that is not the case here each singer delivers equally to the overall power on the CD. Amaranthe has delivered possibly the finest debuts I have heard so far this year, in fact I would say that maybe this is one of the best albums I have heard all year, debut or not. I can’t remember when I have been this excited about a debut.

Rating – 95/100

 

Tracklist

  1. Leave Everything Behind
  2. Hunger
  3. 1,000,000 Light Years
  4. Automatic
  5. My Transition
  6. Amaranthine
  7. Rain
  8. Call Out My Name
  9. Enter The Maze
  10. Director’s Cut
  11. Act of Desperation
  12. Serendipity

 

Line Up

  • Elise Ryd – Female Vocals
  • Jake E Berg – Clean Vocals
  • Andy Solveström – Harsh Vocals
  • Olof Mörck – Guitar & Keyboards
  • Johan Andreassen – Bass
  • Morten Løwe Sørensen – Drums

 

Links

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